NC3Rs e-newsletter - January 2018


Modelling bone formation and maturation in vitro


Researchers at the Universities of Birmingham and Oxford, funded by the NC3Rs, have developed a self-structuring model of bone tissue in vitro that simulates the architecture of real bone for the first time. The model can be used instead of experiments on live animals to study bone formation and maturation, with cells remaining viable in culture for up to a year.




Listen to the latest episode of "3 Minute 3Rs"


The latest episode of the “3 Minute 3Rs” podcast, produced with LabAnimal, is now online. This month’s edition covers the use of zebrafish embryos in nanotoxicology studies, an approach for turning plain language summaries of animal experiments into analysable data and a new protocol for making knockout mice in a single generation. You can listen or subscribe to “3 Minute 3Rs” via SoundCloud or iTunes.




New NC3Rs Board members appointed


We are pleased to announce that Professor Paul Garside, Dr David Lovell and Professor Jon Timmis have joined the NC3Rs Board. They bring with them expertise in a range of fields, including immunobiology, medical statistics and computational biology.




Coming soon: Regional Programme Manager vacancies at the NC3Rs


Do you have a demonstrable commitment to the 3Rs and a passion for driving scientific excellence?

We will shortly be recruiting two new Regional Programme Managers to work with universities and provide dedicated 3Rs advice at the project, laboratory and institute level. These roles will be based primarily at the Universities of Bath, Bristol, Cardiff and Exeter (GW4 Alliance group), and the University of Oxford.

To stay informed about these and other roles at the NC3Rs, follow us on Twitter or LinkedIn. You can also create a job alert via the MRC Vacancies website.



2018 highlight notice: systematic reviews for 3Rs purposes


Although systematic reviews are common practice in clinical research, they remain relatively under-utilised in animal research. To maximise their potential for advancing the 3Rs, we are running a highlight notice across all funding schemes throughout 2018 for applications incorporating systematic reviews.




CRACK IT 2018: Call for Challenges


We are now inviting submissions from Sponsors for new CRACK IT Challenges for the 2018 competition. The deadline for new Challenge submissions is 1 March 2018.




New Solution: CombiDART – a non-vertebrate platform for rapid toxicity testing


Researchers at the University of Oxford have developed CombiDART, a non-vertebrate model system to rapidly assess compounds for developmental and reproductive toxicity (DART). Industrial partners are sought to provide advice on the most commercially useful ways to develop the system, including detail on how to meet their end-user needs and support wider uptake.




New Solution: Vertex – simulating interventions on the mammalian brain


Vertex is a computational model for simulating the effect of interventions on brain tissue from multiple species, developed by the Neuroinformatics lab at Newcastle University. Collaborators are being sought to test the reach of the model and explore its utility in improving the safety and efficiency of drug development aimed at brain disorders.



NC3Rs Cardiovascular Showcase

23 March 2018 (Central London)

Our one day Cardiovascular Showcase event will highlight the wide range of NC3Rs projects within cardiovascular science and bring together a diverse group of scientists working to advance the application of the 3Rs in cardiovascular research and safety assessment. It will feature presentations, posters and workshops, as well as three breakout sessions.

Attendance is free, but registration is essential (closing date: 8 February 2018).




NC3Rs workshops at the Institute of Animal Technology Congress 2018

20-23 March 2018 (Northern England)

We will be hosting two workshops at this year’s IAT Congress, to explore practical approaches to identify, evaluate, and validate opportunities for refinement to improve laboratory animal care. The workshops will provide delegates with the tools and knowledge to successfully introduce such refinements at their own facilities.

The closing date to register for the conference is 2 March 2018.




Our top ten news stories and blog posts of 2017


In this blog post we look back at the most popular NC3Rs news stories and blog posts of 2017. Our Year of Laboratory Rodent Welfare is well-represented among the top ten – read on to revisit some of our other successes from last year.




The PREPARE guidelines


Developed by Norecopa, the PREPARE guidelines aim to assist in the planning of animal experiments. They address a large number of factors which influence the validity and outcome of studies on animals, covering all stages of the research, from the management of an animal facility or population to the individual procedures which form part of a study.